The Dram Shop

wine

Barleywine Week!

We’re winding up for our monthly style feature here at the shop, and this month, due to the final cold stretch of winter laid out before us, we’ve decided to feature barleywine. Starting Sunday, February 14th, we’ll be featuring 6 different varieties of barleywine. It’s a style that weighs in heavily when it comes to flavor and alcohol content. Large grain bills and generous hop additions lead to big ales, that can be as delicate and distinctive on the palate as fine wine. These ales are also fit for aging for multiple years.

This last fact seems fitting, as the first known references to barley wine date back to ancient Greece. Greek historian Xenophon (sweet name we know) makes mention of barley wine being stored and consumed on a regular basis. These earlier versions would be unlike modern barleywine however as the use of hops was not documented until centuries later. Something tells us these Greek versions were both big and funky.

Style wise, barleywine breaks down along English and American lines. As is somewhat standard in the craft beer world, American versions tend to be more aggressively hopped, while english versions rely on deep malting and more subtle balance. This leaves both versions at similar alcohol by volume percentages, but vast difference in flavor profile and visual appearance. English barleywines can be amber, to deep amber, even to very dark. American barleywines are usually honey colored or even lighter, with amber and red amber being on the dark end. They are all big beers, meant to warm in your glass as you sip slowly and let the burn of the alcohol settle in your stomach.

One more quick aside here, for those of you who like splitting hairs (a favorite pastime of ours)….Barley wine has traditionally been written as two words in britain, and dating all the way back to it’s origins. This makes sense linguistically if it is being described as a type of wine, with ‘barley’ as the qualifier. Legend has it that when Anchor Brewing Company brewed the first significant barleywine on American soil in 1976 (Old Foghorn it’s called), they decided to make it one single word, so that it would not be confused with wine made from grapes in the marketplace. We think it was a wise move, and for the record, we have decided editorially to side with our new world brethren and keep with the tradition. Ok, end of rant.

On that note, we’d like to introduce our starting lineup of barleywines, starting Feb. 14th:

Grand Teton – 2012 Oak Aged Barleywine: 
10.0% ABV – Victor/ID
Brimming with bold flavors of bittersweet malt and heaps of aggressive hops, this barleywine was part of Teton’s annual holiday ‘Coming Home’ series. It was aged in Oak for two years, and then has been aged in stainless since 2014. A rare treat indeed.

Bozone – Wee Nip Barleywine: 9.0% ABV – 100 IBU – Bozeman/MT
Wee Nip boast piney and citrusy hop aromas, and a subtle blend of three specialty malts keeping the beer in balance. A more conservative approach to the alcohol content keeps this brew a little more approachable than other big beers.

Stone – Old Gaurdian Barleywine: 11.2% ABV – 80 IBU – Escondido/CA
The maltiness of this beer is only tamed by a prodigious addition of hops, creating a rich, slightly sweet, ale infused with assertive bitterness and bright hop notes, all culminating in a pleasing dryness.

Rogue – New Crustacean Barlywine/IPA: 11.3% ABV – 88 IBU Newport/OR
Not quite a barley wine and not quite an imperial IPA. Featuring 8 Ingredients: Weyermann & Bohemian Malts; Bravo, Amarillo, Falconer’s Flight & Horizon Hops; Free Range Coastal Water & Pacman Yeast.

New Belgium – Blackberry Barleywine: 10.0% ABV – 50 IBU – Fort Collins/CO
Blackberry Barleywine channels the elegant spirit of a classic English barleywine, but with a kiss of blackberry. A deep wash of caramelized sugar and toasted bread, courtesy of Caramel Munich malts, adopts subtle laces of floral fruit for a proper pairing.

Moylans – Old Blarney Barleywine: 10.0% ABV – Navato/CA         
Our Barleywine Style Ale is a rich and heavy ale brewed to a high gravity. Massive body, mouthfeel and hoppiness. Barleywines are the “brandy” of the ale world. A great sipping ale, and a perfect finish to any meal.

Ask us about our flights too!

 

 

By in What's on Tap 0

What’s on Tap!

We’re excited to feature our draught menu online!

HERE is a link to the over 35 beers, wine, cider and soda we have on tap. This is updated daily so you can always check to see what we’re pouring!

Next up, our bottle menu will be added too! We carry over 30 options of craft beer, cider (and non-alcoholic beverages) that you can enjoy in the shop or take with you. This list is growing day by day so keep your eyes peeled!

If you have requests for draft or bottled beer that you would like us to carry, please post to our Facebook page.

Cheers!

Beerposter

By in What's on Tap 0

How to Choose Your Next Beer

Okay, so here’s the situation: You finally managed to organize a group of friends to go out for drinks, and you’ve decided to try a new place with a large number of beers on tap (not going to name any names here). You arrive, and begin to peruse the menu, and there it is; that feeling of paralysis. There’s just too many choices, and you’re not sure what you’ll like. You don’t want to spend your hard earned cash on a beer that doesn’t add up.

Well, here’s some good news about your situation. Contrary to popular belief, craft beer is not snobby. If you’ve thought about bringing pretentiousness to the party you can leave it at home. The truth is, we love to talk about beer. And most people who enjoy craft beer love to talk about it too. All you really need is a starting point. Maybe it’s a beer you like, or a flavor you tasted that one time when you had that beer at your buddy’s BBQ. If you’re telling somebody who knows the beer selection well, chances are they can give you a few options that you’ll love.

The other great thing is that these days there are more and more options of different beers from different breweries, and they are almost all pushing the envelope on style. Basically, there’s never been a wider variety of high quality craft beer than there is right now.

It’ll help however to have a few terms handy, so let’s do a super quick fly by on brewing and beer classifications. Brewers are adding all kinds of crazy ingredients into some beers these days, but in it’s simplest form, there are four main ingredients in beer: water, yeast, grain, and hops. Different beers use different grains, and although barley is most widely used (most ales), wheat (think Hefeweizen and Witbier), and rye are also common. These grains are soaked in water and roasted, making sugars in the grain available. This is important because the yeast is going to be hungry, and it’s going to eat some of the sugars, producing both alcohol and carbonation, and also leaving some uneaten sugars that provide sweetness in the beer. I’ve heard it described as “yeast eats barley, farts beer.” Not the most eloquent description, but not all that inaccurate either.

Speaking of yeast, there are three main types:

  • Top Fermenting Yeast—Used for ales and ferment at higher temperatures.
  • Bottom Fermenting Yeast—Used for Lagers and Pilseners and ferment at lower temperatures.
  • Wild Yeast—Yeast and Bacteria present in the environment used for Belgians, Sours, and Lambics.

Lastly, but certainly not least, we have hops. Although historically used as much for a preservative as an agent*, the modern use of hops is all about flavor and aroma. Hops are added during the brewing process, adding bitterness to the beer and providing a counterpoint to the sweetness from the grains. Hops can also be added afterwards directly into fermenters in a process called dry hopping, which adds a strong hop flavor and aroma, while adding less bitterness to the beer.

We hope this gives you a general understanding of different beers. And remember, if you have any questions, want to compare and contrast some different styles, or just want to talk beer, come see us at the Shop!

*The popular IPA style which stands for ‘India Pale Ale’ are the hoppiest beers out there. This style was originally hopped so much so that the beer could make the trip by boat from Britain to India and not go bad along the way.

 

By in Remodel 0

Open For Business!

As we rub the sleep out of our eyes on this Wednesday morning we suddenly realize, The Dram Shop is open!

These last weeks have been a blur of long days and nights, incredible hard work from friends and family, and of course frantic last minute preparations. In fact, we procured our Business License and Certificate of Occupancy around lunchtime on a Thursday, finally got our point-of-sale system set up at 2:30 p.m. and our private opening began at 4:00 p.m. Plenty of time to spare I kept telling myself.

And what has been the best part so far? It’s really hard to say, so maybe I should just stick with the laundry list approach. We’ve dealt with the shock of seeing our saw dust laden construction site go from filthy to beautiful almost overnight. And it turns out, you really can put lipstick on a pig. We’ve gotten to see reactions from friends, family, and colleagues as they see our place for the first time, which is just too much fun. We’ve had the pleasure of being on the receiving end of so many congratulatory messages, it’s overwhelming, but in that awesome way. But the most satisfying thing we’ve seen, is people coming through the front door, ordering a beer, and filling up a growler to take home with them. And it remains a bit hard to believe that we can already provide this service for folks. It seems like only yesterday we were trying to figure out what the best floor plan for our place would be.

Framing the cooler

Framing the cooler

Framing the bar

Framing the bar

Cabinets hung, bar top being built

Cabinets hung, bar top being built

Building shelves, pony walls, bench

Building shelves, pony walls, bench

In truth, there’s really far too many people to thank. We had so much help along the way, it’s really been a very humbling experience. So if you are one of those folks, we can’t really say how much we appreciate the support. And if you’re not one of those folks, well, come on by for a drink and we can fix that problem in a hurry!

Cheers!
Zach and Sarah

Hours:
Tuesday-Thursday 12-9 p.m.
Friday-Saturday 12-10 p.m.
Sunday 12-6 p.m.

 

By in News 0

Our first First Friday: Tom Robertson + The Pearl Pub Grub

This is our first First Friday at The Dram Shop! We’re excited to feature Tom Robertson’s photographs on our walls. We hung his show last week, leveling and straightening right up until the doors opened—making the space complete. Tom’s photos were taken across the Rockies, from Yellowstone to Fernie, and right here in Missoula’s own backyard.

Starting this Friday, we will also be offering a select menu from The Pearl Cafe, located right next door. You can order directly via phone from their special menu “Pub Grub” and they will deliver it to you at The Dram Shop!

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Tom’s bio: Tom Robertson is a freelance photographer, as well as an endurance athlete, outdoor enthusiast and avid adventurer based in Missoula. He especially loves incorporating his fitness with his work, keeping up with world-class athletes as he documents their endeavors. Tom has been recognized nationally and internationally for his projects throughout the United States and Europe. Clients include Saucony, Trek, The North Face, Runner’s WorldBicycling, and Adventure Cyclist

Here’s the sample menu from The Pearl Restaurant:

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 The Dram Shop is now open! Come visit us at 229 E. Front St. (between The Trailhead and The Pearl). Open Tues-Thur 12-9pm, Fri-Sat. 12-10pm, Sundays 12-6pm. 

 

 

 

By in Remodel 0

An Architect’s View

guest post by John Geurts, Project Lead, McNelis Architects

The Dram Shop, a growler fill station and taproom for lovers of craft brewing in downtown Missoula, Montana is well on the way to becoming a reality with the opening now less than two weeks away.

McNelis Architects, recently licensed to practice in the State of Montana, worked with proprietors Zach and Sarah Millar to capture their conceptual vision for a family friendly environment to showcase the well-established local micro brews as well as regional offerings.

Located in the historically designated 100-year-old Missoula Mercantile Warehouse Building, the design defers to the exposed 20 foot tall brick walls and fir timbers. McNelis Architects, with John Geurts as project lead, provided complete architectural, engineering, and interior design services from site selection and initial schematic design through construction management phases including documents for all permitting and construction. Interactive virtual walk-thru renderings and shop drawings were produced in house.

New simply detailed wood and colored surfaces introduce an inviting and engaging feeling into the airy space. Stainless steel and ceramic tile surfaces support the sanitary conditions at the back bar. The carefully designed lighting considerations illuminate the appealing variety of the liquid hues as well as the rotating gallery hangings on the surrounding wall surfaces. The new bar top itself showcases sustainable engineered laminate structural fir which enters a design dialog with the original fir floor.

Plans for future growth were incorporated in the design from the inception. In coming months, new folding glass doors will open and invite patrons to enjoy covered sidewalk seating in the Rocky Mountain air.

Before: Vacant tenant space when the lease was signed with members of the Millar family.

Before: Vacant tenant space when the lease was signed with members of the Millar family.

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Proposed view from the entry.

 

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Proposed view of the bar with 32 taps.

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Stud framing for the custom built walk-in-cooler complete with electrical work.

Insulation and drywall underway and cable suspended track lighting complete.

Insulation and drywall underway and cable suspended track lighting complete.

Wall painting in progress and cabinet delivery.

Wall painting in progress and cabinet delivery.

 Completed sheet flooring, and Levi installing the back bar base cabinetry.

Completed sheet flooring, and Levi installing the back bar base cabinetry.

Back bar and bar front installation.

Back bar and bar front installation.

Bar installation and setting the cask keg display case.

Bar installation and setting the cask keg display case with Damian Mast & Co.

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